6 LinkedIn Profile Tips for Success
About our guest blogger:Joni Holderman is the founder and Chief Resume Strategist at Thrive! Resumes. She creates compelling career marketing tools for professionals and executives including LinkedIn profile tips, resumes, and cover letters. Follow her on LinkedIn and Twitter. Learn more about guest blogging on MediaLeaders.
With more than 414 million users, LinkedIn is the leading network for B2B sales, recruiting, career growth and industry news. A personal LinkedIn profile is more powerful than company pages on LinkedIn. Whether you are looking for new clients, a new employee or a new job, these quick tips will deliver results.
LinkedIn profile tips for achieving higher LinkedIn rankings
- Attain 500+ connections strategically
- Post a photo
- Garner three recommendations
- Actively participate on LinkedIn
- Sign up for a premium (paid) account.
- Keyword optimize your profile
LinkedIn gives higher rankings to profiles with more than 500 connections.
LinkedIn gives higher rankings to profiles with more than 500 connections. For greater visibility to prospects in many sectors, connect widely across industries and in diverse geographic regions. If 100% of your prospects come from one industry, it may make more sense to recruit 500 connections solely within that group.
Although LinkedIn recommends that you connect only with people you know well, it actually rewards “free connectors” with higher rankings in searches. Personalizing your request is a great way to make new connections. Many people will accept a connection request even if they have not met you in person.
LinkedIn gives higher rankings to “complete” profiles.
Add a headshot to your LinkedIn profile where you appear professional but friendly and approachable. LinkedIn gives higher rankings to “complete” profiles and it sees any profile without a photo as incomplete. For the same reason, be sure to complete the summary, work history and education sections. It almost goes without saying that all of your profile should be public, meaning contacts can find you via Google.
Endorsing skills is a nice way to reconnect with someone on LinkedIn.
Gaining recommendations from colleagues or clients will boost your LinkedIn rankings. This will cast a wider net because even users outside your LinkedIn network will get notified if you are recommended by one of their Level 1 connections. Consider recommendations as feedback for your network to see. Recommendations give LinkedIn users an idea of what projects or work you have done in the past. Endorsing skills is a nice way to reconnect with someone (or poke them) on LinkedIn, but at this time it has no impact on search rankings.
Join at least five groups on LinkedIn.
Get involved with LinkedIn by posting or sharing updates and liking others’ posts, at least twice a week. Join at minimum five groups and share your insights by posting intelligent questions or answers to discussions within those LinkedIn groups at least twice weekly. Joining LinkedIn groups can grant you access to industry leaders you may have not have been connected to.
Take advantage of the free trial month of premium LinkedIn membership.
LinkedIn gives 250% higher rankings to members with even the lowest-priced premium accounts. Your listing will not only appear close to the top in relevant searches, but it will be larger and more extensive. More expensive memberships boost rankings even higher. Be sure to take advantage of the free trial month of premium membership.
Keyword optimize your profile with terms specific to your industry.
Add terms specific to your industry and the products or services you offer. Include these terms in your profile summary, work experience and in the “skills and expertise” section. Add common variations of keywords. LinkedIn’s search algorithm is still fairly primitive, so it doesn’t recognize that PMP (Project Management Professional), managing projects and project management all denote the same skill set. For maximum visibility, include all those terms in your summary and skills.
LinkedIn profile tips that are not based on search rankings.
Like any network, LinkedIn works best if you build a relationship before trying to close a sale or asking for a job. And, your goal is always to present yourself as a highly successful professional--any whiff of desperation can derail your LinkedIn networking efforts.
These tips will give you new power on your LinkedIn profile -- just be sure you use it wisely!